When I was in college in Singapore, God drew me to Him by making me search for and join an Indonesian Christian Fellowship. There, I met a lot of believers who were passionate about Christ, and for the first time I saw God’s work on display. I realized then that Jesus Christ has the power to set those whom He called to be apart from the world for the gospel of God, as Paul says in Romans 1:1. I began attending church, fellowship, bible studies, and small groups; and for a whole year, my knowledge of God and His Word expanded. I also slowly began my walk with Christ after accepting Him as my Lord and Savior. However, it was still hard for me to live out my faith in my own home. My father was constantly hostile toward the idea of me believing in Christianity; he was also against me being baptized. In my selfish nature, all I wanted was to fight back and prove him wrong. I didn’t have the right motive for standing up for what I believed to be true. Refraining from anger was also a huge challenge when surrounded by families who are driven by emotions, especially anger.
In the summer of 2006, my father let me come to the States where I could be independent and be away from my family. Being by myself in a foreign country without knowing any believers was detrimental to my walk with Christ. I didn’t seek a good church and fellowship. As a result, I didn’t have the accountability or encouragement I needed to run the Christian race. I grew apart from God and my spiritual life became a drought. After a few years, in His mercy and grace, God once again rescued me from the sins in which I was sinking deeper and deeper. He led me to a church where I could hear His Word preached. “So faith comes from hearing, and hearing through the word of Christ,” says Paul in Romans 10:17. God reminded me again that He shows his love for me in that while I was still a sinner Christ died for me (Romans 5:8) and while I was still weak, at the right time Christ died for me, the ungodly (Romans 5:6). It is by this love I have received from Christ that I am able to truly love my family. God has changed my heart from that of stone to that of flesh.
This past summer, God gave me a chance to witness to my family the impact of the work that Christ has done in my life. He has also demonstrated His power in that my father became more open to my faith in Christ. By God’s love that has been poured into my heart through the Holy Spirit who has been given to me as said in Romans 5:5, I was able to react more calmly when my brother or my parents were full of bitterness. God used this incident to soften my father’s heart. He became willing to listen to the reason as to why I want to get baptized and after 8 years of objecting, he finally understood and granted permission. I am truly blessed that God allowed me to honor my parents and to obey Him, in hopes that they will one day come to know my Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ, who has died for their sins. I am now confident that I am saved, as I proudly confess with my mouth that Jesus is Lord and believe in my heart that God raised Him from the dead (Romans 10:9).